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The berkely review, anyone take it and could give insight.

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by Big Bill, Nov 3, 2001.

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  1. Big Bill

    Big Bill Senior Member

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    The berkely review has a homestudy course that looks pretty decent. So know people that don live in california can take the course. I wanted to hear from people that took the course and what they thought of it. Were you pleased with results. Should I just buy some of the books. Did you get a good score?
     
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  3. jmejia1

    jmejia1 Senior Member

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    I didn't take the course but I bought all their material. They have weaknesses and strenghts like most courses.

    The biology books they have I wouldn't recommend because they are WAY too detailed for how the MCAT tests you. The verbal reasoning also has a different flavor than the real MCAT. Thier passages are sometimes very long 100 lines (never seen on an MCAT as far as I know) and the reasoning behind the answering is also off. When reading the explanations for some of the VR passages,some of explanations suggested you use outside knowledge to answe specific questions. On the real MCAT they you don't need ANY outside knowledge.

    The O-chem, G-chem, and Physics books are decent. I would supplement these three books ( they have tons of passages to practice with) with Kaplan or The Princeton Review.
     
  4. The previous reply is very accurate. I think their Physics, O-Chem, and G-Chem books are great. Bio is worthless. Verbal is not that great. I think if you can get the Physics, O-Chem, and G-Chem books along with Princeton's Bio and Verbal... you have a great source. Another great thing to add on is Princeton's fat book on Science Questions.
     
  5. Drako

    Drako Senior Member

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    I took the course and I would not recommend them to anyone. I had a horrible experience with this company. We had about nice verbal sessions and the teacher was absent for 2/3 of them. They ended up getting a med student to teach verbal, which was a total disaster. All we did was do passage the whole two and a half hour I was in class.

    The Bio section was also a disaster and taught by another first year med student. The guy did nothing more than regurgitated the books I read during my undergraduate years to me. He even handed out copies of pages in my old books. When he taught Virology and Immunology to me, I could have gone up there and taught these subjects myself. I knew more about them than he did!

    The physics section was another huge disaster. Our teacher couldn't solve problems in the in-class handouts. The students ended up solving the problems and checking the answers against each other themselves. Worse, we did it faster than he could! We eventually gave up on that guy and pretended he wasn't there! He was totally incompetent.

    The G-Chem section was taught by the owner himself. That was the only good section because he knew his material. He wrote the books!

    We voiced out opinion that we wanted a refund of out money, either 2/3 of it or full. The owner ignored us. I ended up taking the Princeton review the following year. The Princeton review/Hyperlearning is something I would recommend.

    However, I realize that with everything said and done, the MCAT is a beast you conquer by yourself and not with outside help. The material is almost static and if you have paid attention in your undergraduate classes, you will do well. I wish you best of luck!
     
  6. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear 2K Member

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    TO: Draco

    Which BR center did you take it at? I know they're scattered across cali.
     
  7. Drako

    Drako Senior Member

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    I was at the Orange County/Irvine "center." I wouldn't call it a center. It was just a rented class room in one of those corporate plaza.
     
  8. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats

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    Drako,

    I had a completely DIFFERENT experience from you! I took the course in BERKELEY and LOVED IT!!!!

    Amazing course with amazing teachers!
    I agree, the verbal book isn't any good...and bio is pretty detailed BUT the bio book gives some GREAT passages! When I went to take the real test, some of the passages were almost directly from the biology book! I was really happy about that!

    As far as my teachers, The general chem teacher wrote the books to mine as well! His name was Todd I believe. He is a freaking awesome guy with a super sense of humor. My physics teacher was great as well. The bio lecturer was dry. The ochem teacher was awesome. The verbal part I just stopped going to b/c it was lame. However, all these teachers had been doing it for years on end. This is much better than the kaplan or PR where they hire STUDENTS to teach you.
     
  9. Drako

    Drako Senior Member

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    Scooby, I know about the Berkeley center of the B.R. All the good teachers (the ones that wrote the books and do the research for the company) live and teach up there. Down here in southern cali, all we had was Todd. The rest of the teachers were a total joke!

    I had good experience with Hyperlearning. The guy who founded it, Steve Leduc, taught Physics. That guy is awesome! I also had the Princeton Review biology director. She wrote the biology section for the Princeton Review. Our OChem and GChem was taught by the same guy, who wasn't very good. He spent too much time trying to make us laugh at his jokes, which were the least amusing.

    But like I said before, no one can help you with the MCAT. You just have to dig a hole in the ground and disappear for a few months. It's all you and nothing else. :)
     
  10. Teach

    Teach Member

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    I took Berkeley Review this summer at the UCLA center and I thought it was incredible. Todd is fantastic as the others have already said. Todd taught most of the G Chem and O Chem at my center. I thought all the other teachers were knowledgable, but like any program each had their own personalities and style. The 2 hour lectures were extremely helpful to me because it has been six years since I've taken many of the courses. Therefore, if a two hour lecture on a topic I hadn't heard or thought of in six years worked for me, well then people that have just finished these classes may find them unneccessary, so you must make a decision on how much review you need. I used all the materials the class provided, including extra problem solving sessions and office hours. I found the office hours to be very helpful, especially Todd's and Moin's (physics). Every topic that they emphasized would be on the test - was on the test.

    My thoughts on the verbal passages are that they are much longer than on the MCAT, but if you can make it through a set of BR passages without running out of the time the MCAT passages become much more managable. On the test, I got completely through the VS and didn't feel rushed at all.

    I scored a 30 on the August MCAT and I believe that for me without the BR lectures, passages and teacher support that it would have been a different story. I had taken the MCAT two years earlier and reviewed on my own with another company's material and well it took me two years to get up the courage to try again. So, you really have to decided for yourself - Are you the type of person that needs an organized, methodical, review and passage oriented approach for studying for the MCAT? Then BR may be for you.
     
  11. Big Bill

    Big Bill Senior Member

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    I will probably not need any classroom instruction due to the fact that I am in an intense graduate program and will have all the prep needed accept for the physics. What i will need is the best review books with the best passages. Something I can do everyday. alot of similation that is close to the mcat itself. What I will probably due is mix and match with examkrackers. Like bio at berkely and physics at examkrackers. I have heard some good things about berkely review and hyper learning.
     
  12. ORELL

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    can u please give me more information on this since i will be taking the irvine center.
     
  13. iA-MD2013

    Moderator Emeritus

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    ORELL, since this thread is from 2001, I'm sure the OP no longer remembers anything about Berkeley Review. If you like, you can open a new thread asking this question. You would probably get better responses :)

    Closing this thread.
     
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